How Your Smile Affects Your Mental Health

Your Smile and Mental Health

How Your Smile Affects Your Mental Health

Having a smile that you are not afraid to share with the world is not just a great confidence booster; it is also essential for your mental health. Many people think of smiling as a simple emotional response to something funny or happy. And while that’s undoubtedly true, there is also a possibility to smile to intentionally improve your mental health! Keep reading to discover how smiling can benefit your health, improve your mood, and positively affect those around you. 

The Link Between Oral and Mental Health

Data from National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey showed that half of the people with depression reported their overall dental health as fair or poor. The finding highlights the notion that oral and dental health are intrinsically connected. 

Conditions like depression and anxiety may make some individuals less likely to brush and floss their teeth effectively. Anxiety can also cause elevated levels of cortisol, which in turn negatively affect the immune system and leave you vulnerable to conditions like gum inflammation (gingivitis) and gum disease (periodontitis). 

Your mental state has a direct correlation with your dental health. But you might be surprised to learn that taking care of your smile can improve your mental and overall health! Here are some of the positive influences smiling can have on your life!

Smiling Relieves Stress

Making sure you smile several times throughout the day can help relieve stress. When you smile, your brain releases molecules called neuropeptides to help fight stress. In addition, smiling can instantaneously prevent you from looking tired, worn down, and overwhelmed. 

Smiling Can Help You Live Longer

A 2010 study found that genuine, intense smiling can lengthen your overall lifespan and correlate with higher satisfaction with life. It seems that having a positive attitude and outlook on life can add years to your life. 

Smiling Elevates Mood

One important benefit of smiling is that it activates the pathways in your brain that are responsible for your emotional state. So putting on a smile to improve your mood has valid scientific reasoning. Smiling also releases neuropeptides and endorphins, improving neural communication and boosting your mood!

Smiling Boosts Your Immune System

Frequent smiling has been shown to have positive effects on the immune system. When you smile, your brain releases specific neurotransmitters that signal to your body that you are safe and relaxed. Your immune system functions at its best without stress, so next time you notice yourself getting the sniffles, don’t forget to smile to boost your immune system. 

Smiling is Contagious

Smiling is not only good for you, but it is also beneficial for those around you. People’s brains are experts at noticing and interpreting other people’s facial expressions, often mimicking them. If you see someone smiling, you will unconsciously mimic their emotion and start smiling yourself. Talk about a contagious smile! So next time you show the world your pearly whites, you can be sure that you are improving the moods of those around you and yourself. 

Improve Your Smile With Shelby Dental

Having a smile that makes you feel confident and radiant is important for your overall health and the moods of those around you. So if anything is holding you back from smiling wide, now is the time to address it! Shelby Dental Center in Calera, Alabama, offers smile enhancement services for all individuals. All you have to do is pick up the phone and call us! 

Shelby Dental Center is Invested in Your Dental Health

At Shelby Dental, we believe having a smile you can feel great about is essential for your overall quality of life. We offer smile restoration services for patients of any age and are happy to discuss your options with you. Contact us to learn more about smile-enhancing services!